Keurig Stopped Working Part Way Through Cleaning

Photo of our B60 displaying the PRIME error




April 23, 2013


Keurig displayed “Descale” – started the process, filled the reservoir with vinegar and tried to run through the machine but it won’t allow any vinegar through. What to do now?


This was an interesting case where we had to work out what came first and therefore the cause and if the issues were in any way related.

So the first issue is the descale message and how that is generated. Within the logic chips that Keurig uses in its circuit boards there is an algorithm that is preset in generating the descale message on the LCD. We have not been able to find out the setting for this, but Keurig put it in place to ensure that at some point the machine does get descaled. Now depending on where you live this might be too much, about right or not enough. The amount of limescale that will build up depends very much on the type of water being put through your Keurig brewer.

Once the system has detected a water only brewing cycle has been performed the message “should” disappear. We say should as this is not always the case. And we have found in other cases where the message has been ignored for some time the brewer will stop working altogether, even in low limescale areas.

In this case with the brewer not drawing any water from the water reservoir into the boiler unit suggests we have a logic break down associated with the descale message or a water pump failure. The purpose of the water pump is of course to take water from the reservoir and place it into the boiler / heating unit, whereby the air pump helps to build the water pressure that will in turn deliver the hot water through the K-Cup and into your coffee cup.

It could well be that the pump has failed at a very similar time, perhaps being on its last legs when the descale message first appeared. The reader didn’t mention in replies anything about unusual noises or any problems before the message appearing. So we had to conclude, without getting inside the machine and testing the pump, that it was a logic break down with the rest of the machine working just fine. In this case the only solution we have developed, although not as yet tested, is the complete replacement of the machine’s circuit board. These are available to buy through places like and, and something we will be testing in the future and producing a video about.